Finally, it is time to move on.
“In order to open the next gate, you must stay with Me.” He cautions, taking my arm.
We press through the waters, now clear to the second gate. He has me stand in front of Him in order to open the gate. The water swirls around us powerfully. As I open the gate the water rushes through with unexpected power. I am thrown back into Him. The force of the water is immense! Without His strength I would be pushed back all the way to the waterfall. He knows I cannot stand against it here, so He carefully walks us back to the first gate.
“Why is this so strong?” I ask, breathless.
“It is the power of these fears in you.” He replies with an unflappable calm. I never knew how strong these fears were.
The waters have become dark and murky again. Once again I repent of the fear I have held on to and the generations of fear that have been passed down on to me. The waters begin to clear and I can see the fish again. I am relieved.
“Come, we must go to the next one. It never ventures from its lair.” He takes my arm to guide me.
As we press past the second gate, the water becomes deeper, up to my shoulders and now my chin. The higher the shadowy water gets, the greater my fear becomes.
“Hold on to My shoulder.” He offers. I do, finding that I can keep my head above water this way. The cold of the water penetrates me with a new level of fear.
“This monster here is fear of losing control.” He finally explains.
At this I slip from His shoulder and for a moment I am under the water. Dimly I see a huge black snake coiling in the depths. I struggle to break the surface as it wraps itself around me. Its powerful coils encircle me, crushing me, driving the breath from my lungs. As I fight to get a breath, I see a little girl, lost in a store, hiding under a clothing rack, very, very afraid, vowing never to let a situation get out of control again.
Suddenly I am able to reach my hand out through the coils and I find His shoulder. I pull myself to the surface, spitting water, unable to catch a breath for the press of the snake.
“I have made this vow! I will never be out of control again! I confess!, “I cry with the little breath I have left. “I repent! Tear down these structures! Forgive me, Papa!”
I break my other hand free and find the snake’s head. I pull it off of me and try to strangle it, but cannot do it with just one hand.
“Let Me hold you up.” He takes me by the waist and holds me up so my head is above the water. With both hands now I pull the snake from me. Little by little it gives up its hold. I thrust it down into the water, drowning it.
“Cut off the head.” He instructs.
Fumbling to find my sword, I pull it from its sheath, holding it with both hands. I shiver with the cold and exertion, trying to concentrate on using the weapon. “He is in control and I am in His hands!” I cry as the blade comes flashing down to cut off the creature’s head. Triumphantly I throw the snake to the bank.
He is still holding me. He draws me close to rest in His arms. I lay my head upon His shoulder, drawing from His warmth. I see the waters clearing. As they clear, I see the snake’s lair, a place where the waters drop off and become very deep. There are baby snakes in the water! He hands me a bucket and I catch each of the tiny creatures and place it in the bucket. I do not want any to remain. It takes some time, but finally, there are no more. We place the bucket on the shore with the dead snake.
I am tired and drained now. The water has become less cold now and that helps.
“Drink, “ He invites gesturing to the clear waters that surround us.
I do. The waters are clear and sweet now. I would never have imagined how refreshing they could be come.
“Others will drink from this place and be refreshed as well.” He encourages me. He lets me rest a little while, but then insists, “It is time to press on to the next gate.”